Rochdale patient nominates a ‘saint’ doctor at Pennine Acute Trust to receive national recognition

Dr Kouta 4
Rochdale patient nominates a ‘saint’ doctor at Pennine Acute Trust to receive national recognition
16 December 2014

A CONSULTANT from The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust who works across Fairfield General Hospital in Bury and Rochdale Infirmary, whose name and reputation go before him has been honoured with a national award and thanked by the Mayoress and Deputy Mayor of Rochdale.

Dr Salah Kouta, consultant physician with a special interest in diabetes and endocrinology at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, received an exceptional service award from The Encephalitis Society for his care and treatment of a patient from Rochdale.

Encephalitis is inflammation of the brain which is caused by an infection invading the brain or through the immune system attacking the brain in error.

Patient Eileen Pickup nominated Dr Kouta for what she describes as his warmth, charm and tremendous enthusiasm and energy which inspires everyone.

She said: “Dr Kouta saved my life in 2011 when no-one else believed I was going to survive encephalitis. After having it for six months before a diagnosis was made, I collapsed at a civic event. I remember very little about those six months and remember nothing about my emergency admission to Rochdale Infirmary and then my transfer to Fairfield General Hospital, where I am told I was in intensive care and the high dependency unit for several days. When I eventually started to regain consciousness I remember I could hear voices but I was not able to communicate in any way. The ‘voices’ were talking about my ‘survival’, ‘possible brain damage’ if I did come round and one voice in particular (which I came to recognise later as Dr Kouta) saying over and over again “I’ll just try this” and “I’ll have another go at this.”

“I was aware of a lot of ‘wires’ and ‘the voice’ seemed to be fiddling with them. I remember thinking “someone’s working hard (for me).” After that I remember nothing more until I awoke, still unable to communicate but more conscious of where I was (in hospital but no idea where or why). I had the most horrendous hallucinations but eventually awoke one morning feeling more clear headed and able to move my limbs. I was then moved into a large ward and for the first time that I remember came face to face with the man who has now become my ‘saviour’ Dr Kouta. He and his team worked tirelessly to get me right and after physiotherapy and exercise with lots of TLC from ALL the staff I was allowed home – fully recovered with no brain damage.”

Dr Kouta has now looked after Mrs Pickup for the last two years in his follow-up clinic where Eileen has continued her praise of him. “Everyone agrees that he is not only a lovely man but a ‘giant’ in his special field which thankfully for me includes an in-depth knowledge of encephalitis and its implications. I know for certain that I would not be here now approaching my 80th birthday were it not for his tireless persistence and determination and skill to bring me round and because of his unfailing courtesy and genuine kindness to all his patients he has earned the name ‘Saint Kouta’.”

The award given by The Encephalitis Society is given in recognition of exceptional service by individuals within the health, education and social care services.

Dr Kouta said: “The greatest reward in my job is in achieving excellent and successful outcomes regarding the management of patients who are either admitted or referred to the hospital for further treatment. Most of these patients are complex patients with multiple medical problems and they are very unwell. Therefore it is a great achievement to see these patients recovering and back to their normal health.

“It is great to have a positive feedback from the hard work doctors and all staff are doing day in, day out, in order to save lives and improve the health of members of our community. I feel this award is directed to everyone at Fairfield General Hospital and The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust who all work very hard to improve patient care.”

PICTURED : Dr Kouta is pictured with the deputy Mayor of Rochdale, Councillor Surinda Biant and Eileen Pickup.